Using Scrivener to track daily writing goals

When I’m writing a rough draft, I set a goal for myself of 250 words a day. I use the Targets in Scrivener to let me know when I met that goal. But I’d like it even better if there were two changes:

  • Annotations shouldn’t count toward the word count. I understand that’s coming in the next version, and that’s great.

  • I shouldn’t have to leave the targets window open, or consult it – I should be able to set an alarm and have Scrivener automatically signal me, either through Growl or something in the program itself, when I’ve hit 250 new words.

I also use quotas to keep me moving when revising. I set aside a 1,000 word block of text and work on perfecting that as my daily writing job. I’d like to be able to set aside that 1,000-word block (even if the block crosses two or more documents), and then, when I’m done with the day’s writing work, be able to press a button and automatically merge changes back into the project.


  1. The Growl idea is pretty good, I like that. You can of course also use document targets so long as you stay within a single document for your 250 words. That’s the little target icon in the lower right, in case you haven’t come across it yet. It doesn’t use sound, but the colour of the target will change from red to green once you hit the threshold.

I might not be understanding what you are asking for, but this type of task sounds precisely what Edit Scrivenings was designed for. You can select three documents, say, and make an Edit Scrivenings session out of them. Use whatever mechanism you prefer, to choose your 1,000 words (note when you select text, even across E.S. borders, you can right-click to get a word count for the selection). For instance, I’d put a [START] and [STOP] annotation mark around the selected area.

When you are finished for the day, just exit the Edit Scrivenings session. Editing in this fashion applies changes directly to each document involved as you work, so there is no need to merge anything when you are done.

I’ll give that a try and let you know how it works. Thanks!